“When he calls on Me, I will answer him. I will be with him in trouble, rescue him, and honor him.
With long life will I satisfy him and show him My salvation.” (Psalm 91:15-16 LV)
There is no word for coincidence in Hebrew. We know, as Believers and Disciples of Yehsua/Jesus that Yahweh (God) is 100% sovereign. My happening upon Keith and Mandy’s Airbnb profile was not a coincidence, it was all part of The Creator’s greater plan. Again, I will attest to how obedience to the God who moves mountains is mandatory in our walks. It is not optional, brethren!
I know, I know..I pound that into you like a jackhammer on concrete. Why? Because if you do not make that connection from Aleph to Tov, from Genesis to Revelation, you are a “stiff necked people.” (God’s words not mine!) This post was going to start a little differently. I actually had to wait to write it this week because I had to see what happened in the lives of my dear friends, Mandy and Keith. Yes, friends. We all hit it off quickly and I learned within 48 hours why I was placed at their house. Why I was taken off of the road to….wherever He led. This couple’s absolute kindness toward me and my dog as I was coming out of the tent was needed deeply. My heart desperately desired to be welcomed into a home that appreciated me just as I am in Him. I cannot express was a blessing it was.
But the real blessing of this scenario, was not for me.
Mandy asked me right off the bat if I was a Christian. My answer was, “Yes, to the nth. My faith is very deep, my relationship with The Father is everything to me.” Mandy looked me straight in the eyes and confided how she had been praying for a strong Christian friend and what a blessing it was to have me in their home. My heart melted…just…I was a puddle. Because of all I’d been through from 2019-2022, I totally related,
Keith joined us in conversation a bit later. I could see something was not right with Keith’s health so I started praying for him that night. He is a sweetheart, very curious and humorous. We were having a conversation about faith and he told me he prays every day. We chatted for a while then I went to my room. Before I went to bed, I was led to login to ApartmentFinder.com, a website I’d been using to try to find housing around Knoxville before being plucked up and moved away. I heard the Holy Spirit as I was led and obedient to change the search cities on my profile to those in the Tri-Cities area of Tennessee & SW Virginia.
The next morning, as I checked my email, I noticed a message directly from an apartment manager in the area telling me they had an opening and would accept my dog; then she sent me a second message saying their sister community up the road also had dog-friendly units available. What??? Six months. Six. Months. I searched for an apartment up and down east Tennessee. I scrambled to get to the apartments. I arrived to the first community, from the manager who’d reached out to me – she informed me that the people who were supposed to move out, weren’t. But, she promised me that just up the road were two units. I left and drove to the next community.
Yes, the manager assured me they did, they were vacant, so we walked out to look at them. The first was a 1 bedroom apartment in desperate need of renovations and I wasn’t going to pay $950/month for it. The second, was a lovely town-home. It was a lot more space than I needed but I wasn’t looking a gift horse in the mouth. It was quite a bit above my budget so as I drove away I began praying for divine direction and provision. I got back to the house, went online to fill out the application…and had noting but issues. I called the manager and explained what was happening; he was trying to enter my info but he also had issues getting what he input to save. We finally got their system to accept my info, and he told me I’d hear back by end of the day or the next morning.
That evening as I sat at the dining room table doing some things, Mandy came into the kitchen. She asked me how things went at the apartments (we’d chatted that morning on my way out the door) and I told her I was positive I’d get accepted,however, hadn’t heard back yet, but trusted God to do his will in the matter. She started asking me a slew of questions about my faith and why I trusted Him so much. I told her what I tell everyone: He’s all I have. He has proven his faithfulness to me over and over for years, and that stemmed from my being submissive and obedient to Him first. She looked at me for a moment and then her demeanor changed. I didn’t know if she was getting angry or upset, until she started to cry. Then, what I suspected the night before became apparent: She was really being pulled in by Him and she didn’t understand what was happening.
Mandy then told me something unexpected: She had prayed earlier that week for financial help. They hadn’t had anyone come for an Airbnb for months then all the sudden I get dropped on their doorstep. When Mandy received the funds from Airbnb for my stay, it was the amount she needed to cover a loan, to the exact dollar. She expressed how it freaked her out. How she’d talked to her mom about it, and told her it was crazy and her mom said, “No, it’s not crazy, this is how He works!” I looked at Mandy and nodded in agreement then said, “Yes, it is. He has done that for me too.” I was so honored to have been used by Yahweh so unexpectedly.
Mandy and I talked for a long time that night. We created a bond and I knew that she was also an answer to a prayer for me. A true friend.
Out of the blue blessing
On Saturday morning I checked my email to see if I’d heard from the apartment manager. Since it was Shabbat I really didn’t want to focus on it so when I didn’t see an email or get a call, I decided to leave it until Monday…until I saw the notification in my inbox of another rental that was large dog friendly. It was a small house, the perfect size for me and “C” and it was well within my budget. The first showing was the next day so I jumped on the opportunity and scheduled a showing time. The landlord reached out to me and when she did, I also asked if they’d accept a Pitty mix and she said yes, no problem. Whoa…WOW!
I was so stinking excited. Granted, I did not of course want to live in the city, I’d been in the town the previous day and it wasn’t a city like Knoxville or Cincinnati. So, I just accepted that this was the answer to the prayer for direction I sent up on Friday regarding the town-home. I knew that because I have excellent credit, I’d have no issues. I had the money for deposits. I did a drive-by of the house that afternoon just to be certain it matched the photos, and wasn’t a really scary neighborhood (it wasn’t). I had to laugh too because of where it was located for reasons I won’t go into.
The next morning I arrived at the viewing and guess Who made certain I was the first person through the door! Guess Who made sure the landlord fell in love with my sweet pup! Guess Who allowed me to say I’d take it mere moments before more people walked through the door. Guess Who led me to a house which was the exact size and similar in style to the type of home I’d hoped to buy for 4 years. They’d had the house listed as available for move in on November 1st, but they asked me when I’d like to move in. It was October 16th. I asked, “when is the soonest I can move in?” Guess Who made it so I could move in within 3 days…and had my application approved by the end of the day…THE GOD WHO MOVES MOUNTAINS!
I know His patterns in my life and I had known in my gut for almost 6 months I was supposed to move to NE Tennessee, Again, He did not allow me to live where I wanted to live (in the middle of nowhere), rather, where He wanted me to be and I am not complaining. I am so good with it.
Blessing #3 – please pray
I had already discussed with Mandy and Keith if I could stay a few more days, until I had access to one or the other place I’d be renting. This was a further financial blessing to them and they were happy to have me a few more days. Mandy had talked to me about a woman whom they’d taken as a roommate recently and how she didn’t actually think this person was a “Christian” as she claimed. We prayed for this woman and she ended up having a big problem and had to move out at the end of November. Prayer answered!
Mandy and I have kept in touch weekly. We were able to get together for lunch once so far. But, during this time she was confiding in me about Keith’s health, and it was not good news. Both of them are in their early 40’s. Not to go into much detail but soon after she and I met for lunch, Keith was told by his doctors he might have a year to live. My heart broke. The Lord had moved me into this position before, where I was sent to pray family members into the kingdom after suffering through cancer (Keith doesn’t have cancer). I did not want this to be the case again.
So, now I am asking all of you to please bless Mandy and Keith in a huge way by praying for them. A little over a week ago, Keith was admitted to the hospital and this evening the doctor’s had the end of life talk with Mandy. She understands that no matter the outcome it is God’s will for Keith, and for her going forward. I have been praying steadfastly since I found out late last week. Keith is scared. She is trying to lean on The father for strength. I am asking that you come alongside me in praying for them both to be covered in peace and comfort.
I cannot ask for the Father to miraculously extend Keith’s life, although that would be the biggest blessing and miracle of them all and I surely can believe for it. Rather, to have mercy upon him. To lift Mandy up underneath His mighty, loving wings as she is understandably devastated. She is a sweet soul with a rough edge and I don’t want her edge to get thicker but to become softer.
It was very hard to force myself to sit down tonight and type this post. My heart is with Mandy right now and I hope to be able to go and just sit with her soon, hopefully with Keith too before his time comes. The date is December 23, 2022. May the Lord shine His face upon you and bring you peace.